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For Family & Friends

Postpartum is a huge adjustment for everyone. It is important to take good physical and mental care of yourselves. It is also important to understand what postpartum depression is, and how to help with healing. Your patience and support are invaluable. We think Marcus Aurelius had some good advice when he said, ďThe first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are.Ē

Here are some things you should know:

  1. PPD is real; itís serious and often unexpected. Left untreated, it can last for months, even years. A woman suffering from postpartum depression canít just change her attitude. It is not her fault or your fault. Postpartum depression is a disorder.
  2. Postpartum depression does not mean that a parent doesnít love her/his baby or her/his family or that she/he is just being weak.
  3. Both men and women experience postpartum depression. Certainly, when one suffers, the whole family feels the effects.
  4. Someone suffering postpartum depression is emotionally vulnerable. It may be difficult to communicate clearly with each other but it will help if you validate her/his feelings, rather than judge what he/she feels or says.

There is an excellent little pamphlet called "Breaking the Silence" for purchase (even in bulk). It is published by Noodle Soup. 1-800-795-9295. You can also order online at www.noodlesoup.com

Other particularly good sources of information for families are:

PPD Symptoms | PPD Resources | Sleep Deprivation

It is the goal of this Task Force to bring together the practitioners, organizations, research, and best practices that North Shore families need for a healthy postpartum experience. The initial scope of this Task Force is the North Shore United Way community, including the following towns: Beverly, Manchester, Hamilton, Wenham, Ipswich, Essex, Gloucester, and Rockport.